Jason Terry provided a bench spark for Boston in Game 4.
The Boston Celtics survived a comeback effort by the New York Knicks to prevail in overtime and extend this first-round series to a fifth game. Let's take a look at some of the keys to the outcome of this contest, one that snapped the Celtics' five-game playoff losing streak.
KEY TO THE GAME: C'S CATCH-AND-SHOOT WELL
Celtics on Catch-and-Shoots
The Celtics were finally able to put some points on the board in this series, and their performance in a number of areas contrasted their efforts from earlier in the series. The chart on the right shows the difference between how the Celtics fared on catch-and-shoot shots in the first three games of the series, compared to how they shot in Game 4. Paul Pierce, who was 0-for-12 on catch-and-shoots in the first three games of this series, was 4-for-7 in Game 4, with most of those makes coming early when the Celtics got off to their big lead.
JET THE UNSUNG STAR
Celtics guard Jason Terry scored nine of his 18 points in overtime, making all three of his shots in the extra period. Terry was 6-for-6 from 2-point range in this game, including 4-for-4 in the paint. He was 1-for-4 in the paint in the first three games of this series.
CARMELO GOES TOO FAR
Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony tied Bernard King’s Knicks record for most field goal attempts in a playoff game with 35. Anthony became the first player to attempt at least 35 shots and make less than 10 of them in a playoff game since Michael Jordan did so for the Chicago Bulls against the Miami Heat in Game 4 of the 1997 Eastern Conference Finals. The 35 attempts tied the most shots he’s taken in any game (regular season or postseason) in his career. Anthony might have felt the need to shoot more with the absence of J.R. Smith. The Knicks bench managed only seven points in Game 4, the fewest it has scored in any game this season.
Anthony did extend a streak of scoring 30 or more points in games in which his team had a chance to clinch in a postseason series. He’s done so in each of the first four games of his career. Elias noted that Jordan had the longest run of 30-point games in potential clinchers to start his career, doing so in eight straight games.
A FRIENDLY REMINDER
The last time a Boston pro sports team trailed 3-games-to-none to a New York team and won Game 4 in an amount of time that went beyond regulation (ie: extra innings or overtime) was in the 2004 ALCS when the Boston Red Sox defeated the New York Yankees. The Red Sox went on to win that series in seven games. Even just getting to a Game 7 would be a notable accomplishment. Only three NBA Best-of-7 series have featured one team winning three straight games when trailing 3-0 in the series. None have won the series.